Marriage Equality USA

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Current Status


  • A state constitutional ban on marriage equality and civil unions was established in 2000, per Initiative Measure 416. Recognition of same-sex relationships "by any other name" was also prohibited.
  • A federal court challenge to the ban, Citizens for Equal Protection v. Bruning, won in the U.S. District Court in 2005, but lost in the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in 2006. Opponents of the constitutional amendment did not seek review of the decision by SCOTUS.
  • Nebraska extended hospital visitation rights to same-sex couples through a "designated visitor" statute.
  • 28 January 2014, Sarpy County commissioners decided to extend health insurance benefits to spouses of gay county employees who legally married in another state but live in Nebraska.
  • August 2014, Sue Stroesser was denied a Nebraska driver's license because her previous license was under her maiden name and her name changed when she married her wife in Iowa. Nebraska didn't recognize that marriage.
  • 12 November 2014, Nebraska's incoming Attorney General (8 January 2015) planned to defend the state ban on marriage equality and believed he could so so successfully. 
  • 2 March 2015, in the Waters marriage case (see under LAWSUITS-PENDING below), Senior Federal Judge Joseph Bataillon ruled that the NE state ban on marriage equality was unconstitutional!
  • 4 March 2015, One Couple’s Story of Why We Need Marriage Equality in Nebraska and Nationwide - MEUSA News Blog
  • On 5 March 2015, Bataillon's ruling was stayed pending appeal.
  • 29 April 2015, the Court, of its own accord, put the 8th Circuit oral arguments and all further proceedings on hold until SCOTUS ruled in the marriage cases.
  • SCOTUS ruled in favor of marriage equality on 26 June 2015.

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